Tag Archives: Bob Buente

South Park BID Employment Policy Forbids Its Staff From Revealing Their Salaries — These People Are Being Paid With Public Funds — So It’s Not Only Not Desirable To Keep Their Salaries Secret — It’s Actually Not Possible — Therefore We Are Going To Reveal Them All To You In This Post! — Every Last Freaking South Parkie Salary! — With Bonuses! — The Teaser Is That Josh Kreger — Who Is Director Of Quasi-Legal Real Estate Crapola Or Some Such Nonsense — Gets More Than $100,000 Per Year — You’d Think With That Kinda Money He Could Afford A Damn Razor!

Tonight I am presenting a new BIDdological source document for your analytical pleasure. It is the 2018 Employee Manual of the South Park Stakeholders Group which, as you may well know, is the designated property owners’ association for the South Park BID. Anyway, take a look. It’s full of the usual inconsequential nonsense for the most part, but still, this little bit caught my eye:

SALARY CONFIDENTIALITY

It is customary to maintain confidentiality regarding salary and compensation. Because so many different factors have been taken into consideration in determining your salary, it would be difficult to accurately compare your salary with those of fellow employees. Salary discussions and salary review questions should be limited to your supervisor, the Executive Director or President.

But this kind of thing is just silly when it comes to agencies, like the BID, that are subject to the Public Records Act. Obviously paying people creates records and obviously those records are public so obviously the salaries of people employed by agencies subject to the CPRA cannot be kept secret. This is why a website like Transparent California can exist.

Of course, Transparent California sets out to learn the salaries of public employees in California. On the other hand, our goal is to learn everything possible about the City’s BIDs. Sometimes we ask for salary information specifically, but other times it just turns up. You will, of course, remember the monumental release of SPBID Board member Bob Buente’s emails. Well right in there, unasked-for and just waiting to be discovered, was this little gem of an email conversation between Ellen Salome Riotto and the various members of the BID’s executive committee.1

The subject is Staff bonuses and the purpose is for the executive committee to approve them for December 2017. The BID seems to give each staffie 5% of their annual salary as a bonus and so, in order to have an informed discussion of the bonuses it’s necessary for the committee and Ellen Salome Riotto to discuss their salaries. And that’s how we know what they are, regardless of the SALARY CONFIDENTIALITY clause in the Employee Handbook. You know you wanna know what they are! Just turn the page and all will be revealed!
Continue reading South Park BID Employment Policy Forbids Its Staff From Revealing Their Salaries — These People Are Being Paid With Public Funds — So It’s Not Only Not Desirable To Keep Their Salaries Secret — It’s Actually Not Possible — Therefore We Are Going To Reveal Them All To You In This Post! — Every Last Freaking South Parkie Salary! — With Bonuses! — The Teaser Is That Josh Kreger — Who Is Director Of Quasi-Legal Real Estate Crapola Or Some Such Nonsense — Gets More Than $100,000 Per Year — You’d Think With That Kinda Money He Could Afford A Damn Razor!

Share

What Passes For Wit Among Zillionaires — South Park BID Board Members Paul Keller And Bob Buente Mockingly Refer To Downtown Homeless Encampments As “Bombay” And “Calcutta” — Super-Genius Paul Keller Proposes Illegally Using BID Staff Outside BID Borders To Clean Encampments — Has To Be Talked Down Off That Particular Ledge By BID Zeck Dreck Ellen Salome Riotto Who — Despite Her Devotion To Her Satanic DTLA Masters — At Least Has Some Goddamn Sense — Also Riotto Reveals Hitherto Unknown Illegal Downtown BID Anti-Homeless Intelligence Gathering Conspiracy

Last Thursday morning off I went to the concrete canyons of Downtown Los Angeles to sit through yet another interminable gathering of the Board of Directors of the South Park BID and, just for you, dear reader, I have posted video of the whole damn thing both here on YouTube and here on Archive.org. And it was mostly more of the same old bad BIDness, but without a quorum, so no action was taken.

There were a few interesting episodes though, and I’ll be writing about one or more of them soon enough, but the text for today’s sermon is this little hissy fit, pitched by none other than the finest legal mind of his generation, that is to say self-proclaimed schmuck Paul Keller, accompanied by the narcissistic back-up harmony vocal stylings of the BID’s own Uncle Fester,1 which is to say Bob Freaking Buente. There is, of course, a transcription of the whole damn thing after the break, and juicy quotes interspersed throughout the article here.

Paul Keller wants to talk about … underpasses. The ones he drives under when he gets off the freeway in the morning. They’re filled with homeless people. Paul Keller doesn’t like this. Bob Buente reminds him that in zillionairese underpasses are referred to as “Bombay” and/or “Calcutta.”2 What he really seems to hate about them is that (a) they are offensive to his finely honed zillionaire aesthetics and (b) he can’t ignore them because there’s a traffic signal there: “But unfortunately the light causes you to be in Bombay if it’s red.” The problem evidently is that CalTrans has jurisdiction over underpasses so the usual zillionaire methods of getting shit done, like e.g. giving José Huizar another 700 bucks, aren’t effective.

Turn the page to learn what the other problem is, how Ellen Salome Riotto schooled Paul Keller a little bit but he just won’t listen and wants her to break the law anyway, and the big reveal! All the Downtown BIDs are compiling anti-homeless intelligence which they’re evidently going to pass on to Miguel Santiago, possibly in anticipation of his becoming CD14 repster in 2020 because José Huizar’s rapey incontinence has effectively torpedoed the political ambitions of the other Huizar, his hand-picked successor, that is, of course, Richelle.
Continue reading What Passes For Wit Among Zillionaires — South Park BID Board Members Paul Keller And Bob Buente Mockingly Refer To Downtown Homeless Encampments As “Bombay” And “Calcutta” — Super-Genius Paul Keller Proposes Illegally Using BID Staff Outside BID Borders To Clean Encampments — Has To Be Talked Down Off That Particular Ledge By BID Zeck Dreck Ellen Salome Riotto Who — Despite Her Devotion To Her Satanic DTLA Masters — At Least Has Some Goddamn Sense — Also Riotto Reveals Hitherto Unknown Illegal Downtown BID Anti-Homeless Intelligence Gathering Conspiracy

Share

The South Park BID Failed To Even Negotiate Let Alone Execute A Contract With Tara Devine For Handling Their 2017 Renewal — They Didn’t Even Realize There Was No Contract Until My CPRA Request Called Their Attention To It — At Which Point Bob Buente Suggested Fraudulently Executing A Back-Dated Contract — But Worried This Would Haunt The Board If “we’re deposed because Tara does something nefarious” — Ellen Riotto — Who Has More Common Sense Than The Average Zeck Dreck — Advised Against It

So in 2017, back when I was trying to understand Tara Devine’s BID consultancy work for the South Park BID, I sent the Parkies a CPRA request for her contract.1 At the time, twisted little minion Katie Kiefer, who quit the BID earlier this year and is now working for shockingly rapey CD14 repster José Huizar, kept telling me that the BID didn’t have any records responsive to my request. I found this impossible to believe, that putatively competent zillionaire business types would hire someone to do a job for which they’d be paid in the high five figures and not have a written contract explaining what they were expected to do.

It didn’t seem plausible2 so I assumed Katie Kiefer was playing word games with me, which was exactly the kind of crapola she was pulling at the time, all under the baleful influence of Carol Humiston, the world’s angriest CPRA lawyer, along with the rest of her 2017 Parkie buddies. You can read the whole correspondence here on Archive.Org if you’re interested.3 But now, thanks to the recent release of Bob Buente’s emails, a hyper-Aladdinesque trove of wonders provided to me by the ever-helpful Ellen Salome Riotto, current zeck dreck of the Parkers, the truth has come out and can now be explained!

I made my original request for Tara Devine’s contract on July 12, 2017. On July 13, 2017 the Parkies, hiding as usual behind their sinister masks, told me that there was no contract. And here’s where things get interesting! The next day, on July 14, 2017, Ellen Riotto emailed her executive committee and asked them if there even was a contract:

From: Ellen Riotto <ellen@southpark.la>
To: Robin Bieker <robin@biekerco.com>, “Sjordan@legends.net” <Sjordan@legends.net>, “daniel@jadeent.com” <daniel@jadeent.com>, “bbuente@1010dev.org” <bbuente@1010dev.org>, “JLall@ccala.org” <JLall@ccala.org>
Subject: Devine Strategies Contract approval

All,

Per the CA Public Records Act, we’ve been asked to disclose our contract with Tara. The only record we have on file is her proposal, attached. We do not have a final signed contract. We looked through meeting mins to see if we could track down a board vote to approve the proposal, but were unsuccessful. Do you recall if this decision was made by the executive committee?

Thanks

Ellen

The attached proposal she mentions in the email is available here. Also note that if she were following the law she would have asked these BIDdies if they had the records before she told me that they did not, but there’s not much to be done about that. And with that simple request, things really went off the rails!
Continue reading The South Park BID Failed To Even Negotiate Let Alone Execute A Contract With Tara Devine For Handling Their 2017 Renewal — They Didn’t Even Realize There Was No Contract Until My CPRA Request Called Their Attention To It — At Which Point Bob Buente Suggested Fraudulently Executing A Back-Dated Contract — But Worried This Would Haunt The Board If “we’re deposed because Tara does something nefarious” — Ellen Riotto — Who Has More Common Sense Than The Average Zeck Dreck — Advised Against It

Share

South Park BID Executive Directrix Ellen Riotto On Shadowy BID Consultant Tara Devine — “It Was Painful Working With Her But Frankly I Don’t Have Time” To Find Someone Else

Recently I obtained a big stack of emails from South Park BID treasurer Bob “Balder Than You’ll Ever Be” Buente and posted the whole steaming heap on Archive.Org for your reading pleasure. And one thing I’m finding in the set of records is a lot of anger towards shadowy BID consultant Tara Devine, who helped the Parkers get their BID renewed last year. For instance, as we’ve already seen, Bob Buente openly declared that he was “not a Tara fan.”

And this evening, just for tricks and snuggles, I have for your sophisticated perusal yet another fine example of the South Park we-hate-TD genre.1 It seems that in May 2018 Ellen Salome Riotto, Zeck Dreck of the South Park BID, realized almost at the last moment that if the BID was going to increase assessments for 2019 they had better get on the damn case because the relevant spreadsheet was due to the City by June 1.

And, unlike the Venice Beach BID, which just went ahead and raised the damn assessments, Ellen Riotto evidently felt a need for caution, so she asked the Executive Committee of the South Park BID2 about hiring none other than Ms. Tara Devine, seemingly on an ad hoc basis, to advise on the proper procedure for jacking up everyone’s property taxes.

Just take a look at this email of May 1, 2018 where she tells her bosses all about her plan. She mentions that she has “a call into Tara” and then, perhaps remembering that no one actually likes Tara, feels the need to affirm her bosses’ feelings: “yes, I know it was painful working with her.” So why is she calling on Tara, you might well ask. It is because she, Ellen Salome Riotto, put things off for too long and now it’s too late to get someone competent: “frankly I don’t have time to find a new consultant, bring them up to speed on our BID and make decisions.”

Of course, in order to explain the fact that she’s hiring Tara even though everyone at the BID hates Tara, she has had to own up to the fact that she, Ellen Salome Riotto, is to blame for being a poisonous procrastinator. But that’s OK! You know every single one of those damn management books they sell at every airport in this country?3

They all quote that pernicious nonsense about crisis and opportunity and Chinese writing and so forth4 and then they universally go on from there to tell people to own their damn mistakes and the bosses will be super-impressed! They might even tell people to make mistakes on purpose just so they can reap the benefits of owning them. And Ellen Salome Riotto didn’t get where she is today by not reading those books!5 And that is, no doubt, why she seems so pleased with herself for closing the email with some high-powered mistake-owning: “I want to apologize for the fire-drill here. I should have entered the reminder in my calendar on April 1st, not May 1st. Lesson learned.”

As usual, it’s another tale full of sound and fury6 but it’s interesting to those who are interested, among whom we proudly count ourselves! And we’ll be back with more soonest! And turn the page for a transcription of the complete email!
Continue reading South Park BID Executive Directrix Ellen Riotto On Shadowy BID Consultant Tara Devine — “It Was Painful Working With Her But Frankly I Don’t Have Time” To Find Someone Else

Share

Remember In 2017 When Tara Devine Was The South Park BID’s Renewal Consultant? — For A While It Seemed That The Petition Drive Was Lagging And That The BID Would Have To Go To Manual Billing For Year One — BID Treasurer Bob Buente Blamed Tara Devine For This — Publicly Proclaimed Himself To Be “Not A Tara Fan” — And Also Congratulated Himself Cause He Didn’t Yell At Her On The Phone! — And When Tara Failed Ellen Salome Riotto Stepped In! — Saved The Damn Day! — And Was Rewarded Just Like A Real Life Fairy Tale!

Remember when Jessica Lall left the South Park BID after Carol Schatz’s hand popped up out of out of that lake and handed Jessica Lall control over that weaponized slice of zillionaire mob-rule known as the Central City Association? And Ellen Salome Riotto came up out of nowhere like Dick Whittington and his damn cat to assume the holy mantle of interim South Park BID Zeck Dreck?1

And around that time, for whatever reason, twisted little Parkie minion Katie Kiefer was the boss of South Park BID’s CPRA efforts. And the power went to her head, or she had not yet realized that Carol Freaking Humiston was working through her own weirdo anger issues rather than giving prudent advice to her clients, or something. And in those dark days the South Parkies were a very model for CPRA-obstructionist BIDdies.

But, you know, I keep trying, because they have important information out there in the Park. And I am pleased to announce that those dark days are past! Now, under the enlightened regime of Ellen Salome Riotto, now promoted to most expressly non-interim Zeck Dreck, the records are pouring in! And there are no nonsensical copypasta exemption claims of the aggressively psychotic sort Katie Kiefer was so very damn fond of! And the first batch is prepped and available! It’s about 800 emails from the hidden vaults of BID Board treasurer Bob Buente! And you can see all of them right here on Archive.Org!

And friend, there are a million good stories in there. Some of them are monumentally important, but those will have to wait till later. In this episode I want to share with you an objectively trivial but subjectively delicious little slice of gossip about shadowy BID consultant Tara Devine and her ultimately dissatisfied BID renewal clients over at South Park2 and how her failure led to Ellen Salome Riotto’s promotion.

And now I yammered on for so long that you’ll have to turn the page just to find out what is the subject of the damn post. One of the pitfalls, one of the pleasures, of writing without an editor to boss me about!
Continue reading Remember In 2017 When Tara Devine Was The South Park BID’s Renewal Consultant? — For A While It Seemed That The Petition Drive Was Lagging And That The BID Would Have To Go To Manual Billing For Year One — BID Treasurer Bob Buente Blamed Tara Devine For This — Publicly Proclaimed Himself To Be “Not A Tara Fan” — And Also Congratulated Himself Cause He Didn’t Yell At Her On The Phone! — And When Tara Failed Ellen Salome Riotto Stepped In! — Saved The Damn Day! — And Was Rewarded Just Like A Real Life Fairy Tale!

Share